KLASICA Designer Interview Vol.3
Source of Creation and
2022 SS COLLECTION "GLANCE"
05/11/2022

A designer interview that focuses on the creator's thoughts and approaches the back side of creation.

This time, from KLASICA, which is handled at ANNASTESIA Nagoya shop, we are interviewing the designer Mr Kohei Kawamura for his time to conduct a three-part interview.

In this third session, we get closer to the source of Mr Kawamura's creations and hear his thoughts on the 2022SS COLLECTION "GLANCE", which will start delivery in January.

KLASICA

Based in Tokyo, this brand has been creating products since 2006 with the vision of "wanting to create a style rather than fashion.".

It features a mix of elements such as vintage wear from all over the world, mode fashion that represents each era, art, and various genres, ideas, and historical backgrounds. Although it has a certain individuality, it proposes a style in which the wearer plays the leading role.

 


 

Based in FASCINATE, where she works in the store as a salesperson and also as a media editor.

Where does the input for the creation come from? "I don't watch fashion, but people in the city often do."

Ideas are written down anyway. What was disparate becomes one, and the work is created. From Instagram @malanmagli

--- Mr. Kawamura, you have been creating clothes for 15 ~ 16 years. When is the most enjoyable time you have to make clothes?

It's when you feel an idea taking shape. When I think about design, I just keep drawing ideas on the back of A4 paper.


I continue to draw similar pictures while thinking about things like "Here it is, here it is. This part is like this.".


As you do this, you'll see that the disparate material gradually converge. The details, the size, and the finish of the hem, sleeves and lining are determined in this way.


Those moments are really interesting.

--- Do you see it as a puzzle that you are trying to fit together?

No, it's not like a puzzle, but rather like removing dirt. The image of a shiny body appearing as you polish a very dirty bike.

--- How do you input ideas?

I don't often see the mainstream of today's fashion, but I see people in town and go to second-hand clothing stores.


Brush up and a work, a style, is completed. From Instagram @klasica_kohei_kwmr

--- What do people see in the city?

If you're dressed in a way that you can't help but look at, you're going to try to learn.


It doesn't have to be a fashionable person, it doesn't have to be an old man who doesn't know what kind of work or what kind of people are called "Osaka's aunties".


It's important to think "He's so interesting!" when you see it.

--- Do you still go to vintage shops to look at second-hand clothes?

Vintage shops usually have a purpose, such as "I want to see this detail of something from something".


Also, I often go to shops where I find new value in something that is nothing based on the owner's sense of taste. It's like, "I wonder if something interesting will come out.".


A shop like that sold for 1,000 yen at Furima might be worth 50,000 yen if the owner thinks it's worth it. You get a sense of value that you don't have.

--- Do you go to recycle shop-type shops that "sell/buy everything" less often?

I sometimes go. I use it like a library in a sense.


For example, when I want to see the details of a solid sweat shirt or work pants, I go to such shops.

KLASICA Kawamura's creative "manners"

Mr. Kawamura at work. From Instagram @malanmagli

--- Starting with vintage wear, is there anything that you are conscious of when you put your input ideas into the design?

It's a word that often comes up in interviews so far, but moderation is important.


Even though I like vintage, I rarely make copies. I don't know the name or the origin, and if I want to keep it in a condition where it collapses after wearing it a few more times, I sometimes trace the pattern carefully and make a model.


But other than that, I often use a tailor-made base of my own design and use details from vintage.


In the process, you mix military, work, hunting and dress elements, mix them, and repeat the process .......


As a result, the image is that it can be military or tailored, depending on the degree of moderation.

--- Can that moderation ever fail?

Yes, it can. "I took it a little too seriously," or vice versa.


At first I thought it would work, but there are cases where the design is fixed, the pattern is made, the fabric is purchased, and the sample is made, but this model is not good and cannot be included in the collection.

--- I see, you don't compromise.

It doesn't do any good to force things into the collection that don't fit.


You have to give up and let it sleep. It's a waste of money and time, so I try as much as possible not to let that happen (laughs).

The best thing is that people who see KLASICA enjoy it" - the driving force behind the creation.

From the 22SS collection.

--- It's been 15 to 16 years since you started KLASICA, but I don't think it's easy to keep up with new creations every season. What is the driving force of creation for you?

Whether you are a buyer or an end user, the best driving force is that people who see KLASICA, enjoys it.


It is a great feeling when a buyer tells you at a trade show that they have to choose for budget reasons, but they really want to stock everything, or when you talk directly to end-users at events held several times a year and see their reactions.


That part of it hasn't changed from the time I talked about in Part 2, when I sold the first garment I made myself.

Kawamura says it is the smallest clothing store in Tokyo. From Instagram @klasica_shop

--- KLASICA has FLAGSHIPSHOP in Shimokitazawa, is that also meant to get reactions from end-users?

I believe that KLASICA has a role to play as a liaison between KLASICA and society.


My impression is that there are overwhelmingly more stores that deal with major brands in Tokyo, so brands like ours tend to be buried.


But if there is a shop, it will be the window to tell directly what kind of clothes KLASICA sells and what kind of world view it expresses.


If I stay in my office or studio, I always end up there.


It's not that it's good because I open a shop or bad because I don't. I think it's just the way I work.

"The center is neither Paris nor Tokyo, but the wearer himself." Kawamura's view of fashion.

Exhibition in Paris

--- There have been exhibitions in Paris since around 2012. What kind of city is Paris to you?

In my previous job, I had been to Paris on business several times, but the reality was not so good for the beautiful Paris I had in mind, so it might not have been obvious at first.


But after I couldn't go because of the pandemic, I realized that I had come to like Paris in the last five or six years.


I went there every six months, and I was always really looking forward to it.

--- What do you like about Paris?

Is it air? I don't have to do anything special, and I like to stay in that city and look at it.


When I'm in Tokyo for half a year, I can't help but feel english again. But when I go to Paris, I feel my senses are tuned, partly because I like the creation over there.

Exhibition in Paris

--- So for you, is Paris the fashion capital of the world?

I don't think so. I don't think there is a mainstream somewhere or someone, but there is a fashion and life for each person in each place.


I think that if there is a fashion center, it is not Paris or Tokyo, but the wearer himself.


That's why I hope KLASICA's clothes will bring out the attractiveness of the wearer.


That's why we make clothes that blend in seamlessly without being obtrusive in any location.


However, in order to choose KLASICA clothes among many clothes, you have to have some personality.


The struggle between these two factors may come into play in the same way we talked earlier.

About 2022 SS COLLECTION "GLANCE"

Image of 2022SS COLLECTION "GLANCE

--- Please let us know about the 2022 SS COLLECTION "GLANCE" which will be delivered from January. First of all, what does the theme "GLANCE" mean?

"GLANCE" is an English word meaning to glace over or blink, and becomes an idiom meaning to catch a glimpse of or ~ take a glance at ~.


In my case, the theme of the collection is decided from the beginning, or it is decided later when I start to make it naturally. This collection is the latter.


Before I knew it, I started to make it, but when I looked at the ideas and designs I gathered, there was no unity and it was quite disorganized. But this time I thought it would be okay.


Instead of forcing it through a single core, try to make something that catches your eye and concerns you.


That's why, if you look at it, you will feel that "Why is this material line and this material line in the same collection?" but this season is one where the inconsistency is good.

Mr kawamura's favorite DRY BLACK BACK TWILL setup.

--- It's like a toy box collection. Is there any fabric that you personally like?

DRY BLACK BACK TWILL.


This is a 100% cotton fabric woven with strongly twisted threads, but it is a deep black that absorbs light and looks like wool at a glance.


It is easy to wash without worrying about anything, and it has a feature that it is hard to wrinkle by twisting the thread strongly.


It is comfortable on the skin and can be used in summer. I have often used black linen in the past SS season, but I think I have found an excellent new summer material.

KLASICA's first unlined jacket called "KLING".

--- Do you have a favorite item?

It is a jacket named KLING.


There is a version of DRY BLACK BACK TWILL and a fabric version called ORIGINAL PATTERN GLEN CHECK made of 53% cotton, 24% silk and 23% linen.


This is actually my first unlined jacket. After all, it is more beautiful to have a lining when you take it off, so I have been wearing a lining or half lining for a long time, but this season I wanted to try it without lining.


Also, I like the new pants called GOSSE.

Loose-fitting, barrel-shaped "GOSSE" pants

--- What kind of pants are they?

Simple wide straight pants with little detail. The fabric is the same as KLING, DRY BLACK BACK TWILL and ORIGINAL PATTERN GLEN CHECK.


I wanted to compete with the silhouette of these pants, but it turned out very well. Please try it with KLING as a set.

--- What was the most important thing when you designed the 2022 SS COLLECTION?

Weight. That's why KLING has become an unlined jacket, but I tried to make it as light as possible.

--- Why is that?

Because I feel that summer is getting longer. In Japan, summer continues until October.


That's why items from the SS collection are worn for a long time as summer clothes.


Until now, I had been making spring clothes and summer clothes separately, but instead, I designed almost all of them in the image of wearing them as summer clothes.


So you can wear any item for a relatively long time.

We hope that people will enjoy fashion more than last year while leaving it to each individual who wears it.

--- Finally, what did you want to tell the wearer through the 2022 SS COLLECTION?

Basically, it's up to the wearer to decide how to dress, how to feel and how much time to spend wearing it. As I said before, KLASICA is made mainly by the wearer.


If I had to say, why don't we enjoy fashion more in the spring and summer of 2022 than in 2021?


In the summer of 2021, there were many people who just wore T-shirts and shorts because of the pandemic. It might happen again this year.


Of course, the person wearing the clothes should feel relaxed because of the sizing and materials, but I dare you to stop wearing a T-shirt and shorts.


Wear black trousers and a white shirt with a light jacket. I think it's fun to dress in such a crisp way.


If I wanted to say something, it would be this.

--- I'm looking forward to this collection which will give all of us the joy of dressing up. Mr. Kawamura, thank you for your time and for this interview.